Chicago Blackhawks officially complete major signing

Published December 29, 2023 at 2:25 PM

The Blackhawks organization and the Rockford IceHogs have made a significant addition to their roster, signing forward Jackson Cates to a one-year AHL contract that extends through the remainder of the 2023-24 season.

Cates, 26, initially joined the IceHogs on Dec. 11 under a Professional Tryout contract (PTO) and has made an impressive impact, tallying five points (3G, 2A) in six games.

Cates is expected to make his season NHL debut with the Chicago Blackhawks shortly, as the injuries continue to pile up for the NHL roster.

Known for his prowess in faceoffs, Cates has been a versatile player for Rockford, contributing across various game situations and showcasing his scoring ability with a power-play goal, an even-strength goal, and a shorthanded empty-net goal. Standing at 6 feet and weighing 190 pounds, the center boasts an impressive 65% (83-128) faceoff percentage, well above the team average of 50%.

Before joining the IceHogs, Cates played 12 games with the Bridgeport Islanders this season on a PTO, recording one goal. In the previous season with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, the Stillwater, Minnesota native accumulated 23 points (11G, 12A) in 65 games and also made five NHL appearances with the Philadelphia Flyers. Throughout his career, Cates has played 20 NHL games, all with Philadelphia, contributing a goal, an assist, and maintaining an even +/- rating.

Cates transitioned to the professional ranks after three successful seasons at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, where he clinched an NCAA national championship as a freshman in 2019.

The IceHogs are set to face the Milwaukee Admirals on Saturday, Dec. 30, at UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, with puck drop scheduled for 6 p.m.
December 29   |   82 answers
Chicago Blackhawks officially complete major signing

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